The War On Drugs have dropped their support acts from their US tour amid continued concerns about the Omicron variant of COVID.
The band are set to begin a run of dates behind 2021 album ‘I Don’t Live Here Anymore‘ next week (January 19), and in a message posted to their website, Adam Granduciel also asked fans to wear masks throughout the performance.
Granduciel began the message by revealing that the band’s shows in Toronto on February 5 and 6 have been cancelled due to restrictions on the capacity of indoor events in the Canadian state of Ontario.
“We’ve always loved playing for you in Toronto and have had some of our most memorable nights as a band there,” the message said. “We’re so disappointed to be doing this, but we promise we’ll make it up to you in 2022 (and beyond). Wheels are already in motion as they say…”
Going on to discuss the remaining tour dates, and new plans that are being put in place, Granduciel added: “We’re also requesting that as many of you as possible wear a mask when you come see us play this tour – especially if you’re in the first few (50) rows. I know we’re all over masks but for one, it makes me more at ease cuz now I don’t get self conscious (and dark) when I see y’all yawn out there but also because we want our fans, our crew and our band to stay healthy so we can honour the commitments we’ve made to every city on this tour. Seriously, we would really appreciate it.”
Of support acts, he added: “Second, due to this latest Covid surge and our need to exist within the tightest possible tour bubble, there will be no support acts on this run. We know how excited all of the opening acts were for this tour and we sincerely appreciate them being so f’n understanding.”
A host of gigs have been cancelled worldwide due to the surge in Omicron cases. Most recently, Rina Sawayama cancelled her upcoming European tour and Wolf Alice’s UK run of dates is also off.
For shows that have been going ahead, a number of acts have been relying on specially trained dogs to sniff out COVID before a show needs to be cancelled.
As reported by Rolling Stone, Eric Church, Tool, Metallica and The Black Keys have brought dogs on board that are able to sniff for traces of the virus in anyone involved backstage, including members of their crew and entourage. If they detect the virus after sniffing people’s hands and feet, they sit down.